The Lexile Framework for Reading, developed by MetaMetrics, uses one scale to provide measurements of both the difficulty of a particular piece of text and the comprehension level of a particular reader. The Lexile Scale typically ranges from 200L to 1700L, though scores may occasionally fall below and above that range. 200L is considered beginning reading level. 1200L is considered workplace-level text.
The Lexile score for a piece of text is determined by two factors:
1. Word Frequency
- How often are commonly-used words used?
- Based on a corpus of hundreds of millions of words used in a variety of contexts
- Takes into account the likelihood that a reader will have had previous contact with the words used
2. Sentence Length
- Based on the number of words per sentence
Both non-fiction and fiction prose can be accurately Lexiled; poetry, free-form writing, and outlines are among the types of writing that cannot be accurately Lexiled due to their lack of sentence structure. A Spanish version of the Lexile Framework is also available.
|Clifford, the Big Red Dog||220|
|The Cat in the Hat||260|
|Junie B. Jones & the Stupid Smelly Bus||380|
|Ramona the Pest||850|
|Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone||880|
|Call of the Wild||1170|
|Wall Street Journal||1320|
Students can be matched to a Lexile score through a variety of testing methods.
A student’s Lexile score is represented by a range of 150 points. The lower end of that range represents the level at which the student is able to read independently. The upper end of the range represents the student’s instructional reading level, a level at which the student is likely to need assistance and guiding.
Once a student’s Lexile range is determined, the Lexile Database can be used to find appropriate text. The database, available to all at www.lexile.com, contains information on tens of thousands of books and articles, with more being added regularly. The Lexile database can be searched using Lexile score, title, author, and key words. Using this database, a teacher can identify a list of books about the same topic or by the same author but that represent a variety of reading levels that can be matched to his or her students. The Lexile website includes many other resources and tools for teachersincluding activities for many of the Lexiled books and a monthly newsletter describing best practices.
Lexile Analyzer, a tool on the Lexile.com website, allows a teacher to assess the approximate Lexile level for text that isn’t in the database. This tool can be used, for example, to asses the Lexile for text on a website so that the teacher can identify sites that are an appropriate reading level for student use.